Last week, Casino Reports produced an article regarding British Columbia Lottery Corporation’s (BCLC) new role in fighting money laundering activities at British Columbia’s casinos. As it can be recalled, BCLC increased its oversight of casinos to better help the industry crack down on illicit practices. As part of the initiative, BCLC embarked on a renewal period for its operational services agreement (OSA) with licensed casino operators.
The regulatory body announced that it is to agree to new terms with the operators in order to strengthen its watchdog powers. BCLC introduced its revised 20-year long OSA last week, explaining that most of the aspects of the provincial gambling market are already reconsidered.
Under the new terms, the casino operators are to actively participate in the current clampdown on money laundering. In return for their vigilance and commitment, the casino operators are to enjoy a 5% Facility Investment Commission. BCLC explained that the new regulations came after British Columbia Attorney General David Eby publicly released a 2016 report that raised concerns regarding alleged money laundering activity at River Rock Casino Resort.
President and Chief Executive Officer of the British Columbia Lottery Corporation, Jim Lightbody, asserted that the revised regulations are to produce the expected results after some time. Mr. Lightbody released an official statement, in which he explained that BCLC is on the right way with the latest changes. He warned that the operators, who fail to comply with the new regulations on multiple occasions will be sanctioned.
What the New Operational Services Agreement Say
The British Columbia Lottery Corporation officially announced the new regulations that are included in the operational services agreement. As aforementioned, the main drive behind this move is to grant more “oversight in the areas of compliance and security” to BCLC. Under the new OSA, the casino operators are required to present reports that include capital and operating investment commitments. In that way, BCLC will be able to respond faster to suspicious activities and follow its own principles in monitoring BC’s casino industry.
The BCLC introduced a permanent tax hike on regular-limit table games and poker. Under the new regulations, the current tax on regular-limit table games and poker will be increased by 2.5% to 42.5% and 77.5%, respectively. The taxes on slot machines and high-limit table games will remain unchanged. As for the bingo sector, the regulatory body announced that it is to temporarily increase the current tax. The operators who offer bingo games will have to pay 90% tariff on a net income of C$10,000 every week. The rate is to drop to 45% after some time.